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Ultimately, this all comes back to consumers. We are the ones who choose where to take our business. And for the most part, Americans have chosen cheap. It’s hard to blame middle class families for making that decision — not a lot of people have the extra cash to make a political statement out of where they buy paper towels and diapers. But it’s led to cycle of impoverishment, where big box stores have brought down wages at smaller competitors desperate to compete, taking money out of the hands of workers, and sending back up the corporate food chain to shareholders. That’s put a burden back on tax payers: research has suggested that Wal-Mart workers are disproportionately reliant on safety net programs like food stamps and Medicaid. I wouldn’t be surprised if the same goes for Target and Best Buy employees. Who’s Really to Blame for the Wal-Mart Strikes? The American Consumer

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